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Tuesday, October 1, 2002
Updated: October 2, 12:29 PM ET
Moss charged with another misdemeanor

Associated Press

Randy Moss
Moss

MINNEAPOLIS -- A week after Minnesota Vikings receiver Randy Moss' run-in with a traffic officer, prosecutors added a charge for the marijuana they found in his car.

The possession of marijuana charge, a petty misdemeanor charge filed Tuesday, carries a fine of up to $200.

But the NFL might also suspend or fine Moss, who was in the league's substance abuse program after testing positive for marijuana last year. The league also tested Moss after the arrest.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the league would review the case. "Under the policy, a drug-related violation of the law is grounds for disciplinary action,'' Aiello said.

ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported Sunday that Moss was already in the league's substance abuse program for testing positive for marijuana last year, and underwent another test by the NFL after his arrest last week.

Police said they found a marijuana cigarette in Moss' car after he was arrested Sept. 24. Moss was driving in downtown Minneapolis when the traffic officer stepped in front of his car to stop him from making an illegal turn. She was slightly injured when she fell off the car.

Moss spent the night in jail and was charged the next day with careless driving and with failure to obey a traffic officer, both misdemeanors.

In a complaint filed Tuesday, prosecutors said the marijuana amounted to just under a gram. Moss has said the marijuana did not belong to him and that he had allowed other people to use his car recently.

Also Tuesday, Minneapolis prosecutors added two new traffic counts to the charges: making an improper turn at an intersection in a hazardous manner, a misdemeanor, and obstructing traffic with a vehicle, a petty misdemeanor.

Each misdemeanor count carries a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and up to a $1,000 fine. The maximum fine on the obstructing traffic count is $300. Neither petty misdemeanor count carries jail time.

As expected, Moss was not present for his arraignment Wednesday and his defense attorney, Joe Friedberg, did not enter a plea during the brief hearing. A pretrial hearing was scheduled for Oct. 30.

"At some point we will enter not guilty pleas to all of these counts,'' Friedberg said Tuesday.

Friedberg also said he did not plan to enter pleas on Moss' behalf during the arraignment, which he expected would be a quick and routine hearing.

"At some point we will enter not guilty pleas to all of these counts,'' Friedberg said.

Moss' agent, Dante DiTrapano, said he had no immediate comment because he hadn't seen the new charges. A spokeswoman said the Vikings had no comment.

Moss could lose his driving privileges in Minnesota for a year because he refused to take a police test for drug or alcohol use when he was arrested, said Kevin Smith, a spokesman for the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

His privileges were revoked Tuesday but Moss, who has a Florida driver's license, got them temporarily reinstated later in the day pending a court hearing and a review of the police reports by the attorney general's office, Smith said. Moss could lose his driving privileges in Florida, too, Smith said.